Can’t wait to read these Library Loot books

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

 

 

With grandma around to read to the boys for a bit, I got to wander among the fiction shelves and pick up some goodies.

 

Fortunately the Milk – Neil Gaiman, illustrated by Skottie Young 

Yup this was more for me than the kids! Hee hee!

fortunatelymilk

“I bought the milk,” said my father. “I walked out of the corner shop, and heard a noise like this: T h u m m t h u m m. I looked up and saw a huge silver disc hovering in the air above Marshall Road.”

“Hullo,” I said to myself. That’s not something you see every day.” And then something odd happened.

Find out just how odd things get in this hilarious story of time travel and breakfast cereal.

Mildred Pierce – James M Cain
I just realized this would be perfect for Back to the Classics. I’ve watched a little of the HBO series via Amazon Instant Video and Kate Winslet is amazing as always, even playing an American housewife.

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Mildred Pierce had gorgeous legs, a way with a skillet, and a bone-deep core of toughness. She used those attributes to survive a divorce and poverty and to claw her way out of the lower middle class. But Mildred also had two weaknesses: a yen for shiftless men, and an unreasoning devotion to a monstrous daughter.

Out of these elements, Cain creates a novel of acute social observation and devastating emotional violence, with a heroine whose ambitions and sufferings are never less than recognizable.

 

Four Souls – Louise Erdrich

Ok I did not know that this was a continuation! Hopefully it will work reading it on its own.

foursouls
Four Souls begins with Fleur Pillager’s journey from North Dakota to Minneapolis, where she plans to avenge the loss of her family’s land to a white man. After a dream vision that gives her a powerful new name, Four Souls, she enters the household of John James Mauser. A man notorious for his wealth and his mansion on a hill, Mauser became rich by deceiving young Indian women and taking possession of their ancestral lands. What promises to be a straightforward tale of revenge, however, slowly metamorphoses into a more complex evocation of human nature. The story of anger and retribution that begins in Tracks becomes a story of healing and love in Four Souls.

Children of the Sea #1 – Daisuke Igarashi

I kind of love these covers

childrensea1

When Ruka was younger, she saw a ghost in the water at the aquarium where her dad works. Now she feels drawn toward the aquarium and the two mysterious boys she meets there, Umi and Sora. They were raised by dugongs and hear the same strange calls from the sea as she does.Ruka’s dad and the other adults who work at the aquarium are only distantly aware of what the children are experiencing as they get caught up in the mystery of the worldwide disappearance of the oceans’ fish.

Children of the Sea #2 – Daisuke Igarashi

childrensea2

The sea has a story to tell you, one you’ve never heard before. Umi and Sora are not alone in their strange connection to the sea. Forty years ago, Jim met another young boy with the same powers. As penance for letting the boy die, Jim has been searching the world for other children with those same ties to the ocean. Anglade, a wunderkind who was once Jim’s research partner, lures Sora away with the promise of answers. This leaves Umi severely depressed, and it is up to Ruka to help her new friend find his brother. But time is quickly running out… When Ruka was younger, she saw a ghost in the water at the aquarium where her dad works. Now she feels drawn toward the aquarium and the two mysterious boys she meets there, Umi and Sora. They were raised by dugongs and hear the same strange calls from the sea that she does. Ruka’s dad and the other adults who work at the aquarium are only distantly aware of what the children are experiencing as they get caught up in the mystery of the worldwide disappearance of the ocean’s fish.

 

 

E-books:

Black Water Rising – Attica Locke

I’m supposed to read Locke’s latest, Pleasantville, for an upcoming book tour. But didn’t know that it had the same characters as Black Water Rising. So thought I would try to read this first! Also, I enjoyed reading her previous book, The Cutting Season. 

blackwaterrising

Writing in the tradition of Dennis Lehane and Greg Iles, Attica Locke, a powerful new voice in American fiction, delivers a brilliant debut thriller that readers will not soon forget.

Jay Porter is hardly the lawyer he set out to be. His most promising client is a low-rent call girl and he runs his fledgling law practice out of a dingy strip mall. But he’s long since made peace with not living the American Dream and carefully tucked away his darkest sins: the guns, the FBI file, the trial that nearly destroyed him.

Houston, Texas, 1981. It is here that Jay believes he can make a fresh start. That is, until the night in a boat out on the bayou when he impulsively saves a woman from drowning—and opens a Pandora’s box. Her secrets put Jay in danger, ensnaring him in a murder investigation that could cost him his practice, his family, and even his life. But before he can get to the bottom of a tangled mystery that reaches into the upper echelons of Houston’s corporate power brokers, Jay must confront the demons of his past.

With pacing that captures the reader from the first scene through an exhilarating climax, Black Water Rising marks the arrival of an electrifying new talent.

Kids’ loot:

 

Picture books and comics this Library Loot

 

 

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

 

A real quick grab-and-go from the library on Sunday. It was nearing nap time and someone was getting cranky…

More comics for me. And just a few new books for the kids.

 

 

Ethel and Ernest – Raymond Briggs

ethelernest

Poignant, funny, and utterly original, Ethel & Ernest is Raymond Briggs’s loving depiction of his parents’ lives from their first chance encounter in the 1920s until their deaths in the 1970s.Ethel and Ernest are solid members of the working class, part of the generation (Brokaw’s “Greatest Generation”) that lived through the tumultuous era of the twentieth century. They meet during the Depression — she working as a chambermaid, he as a milkman — and we follow them as they encounter, and cope with, World War II, the advent of radio and t.v., telephones and cars, the atomic bomb, the moon landing. Briggs’s portrayal of his parents as they succeed, or fail, in coming to terms with their rapidly shifting world is irresistably engaging — full of sympathy and affection, yet clear-eyed and unsentimental.

The book’s strip-cartoon format is deceptively simple; it possesses a wealth of detail and an emotional depth that are remarkable in such a short volume. Briggs’s marvelous illustrations and succinct, true-to-life dialogue create a real sense of time and place, of what it was like to experience such enormous changes. Almost as much a social history as it is a personal account, Ethel & Ernest is a moving tribute to ordinary people living in an extraordinary time.

Showa: A History of Japan, 1926-1939 (Showa: A History of Japan #1) – Shigeru Mizuki

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“Showa 1926”-“1939: A History of Japan” is the first volume of Shigeru Mizuki’s meticulously researched historical portrait of twentieth-century Japan. This volume deals with the period leading up to World War II, a time of high unemployment and other economic hardships caused by the Great Depression. Mizuki’s photo-realist style effortlessly brings to life the Japan of the 1920s and 1930s, depicting bustling city streets and abandoned graveyards with equal ease. When the Showa era began, Mizuki himself was just a few years old, so his earliest memories coincide with the earliest events of the time. With his trusty narrator Rat Man, Mizuki brings history into the realm of the personal, making it palatable, and indeed compelling, for young audiences as well as more mature readers. As he describes the militarization that leads up to World War II, Mizuki’s stance toward war is thoughtful and often downright critical–his portrayal of the Nanjing Massacre clearly paints the incident (a disputed topic within Japan) as an atrocity. Mizuki’s “Showa 1926”-“1939” is a beautifully told history that tracks how technological developments and the country’s shifting economic stability had a role in shaping Japan’s foreign policy in the early twentieth century.

Showa 1939-1944: A History of Japan (Showa: A History of Japan #2) – Shigeru Mizuki, Zack Davisson (Translation)

show1939

Showa 19391944: A History of Japan continues the award-winning author Shigeru Mizuki’s autobiographical and historical account of Showa-era Japan. This volume covers the final moments of the lead-up to World War II and the first few years of the Pacific War, and is a chilling reminder of the harshness of life in Japan during this highly militarized epoch.
Mizuki writes affectingly about the impact on the Japanese populace of world-changing moments, including the devastating Second Sino-Japanese War, the attack on Pearl Harbor, and the first half of the Pacific War. On a personal level, these years mark a dramatic transformation in Mizuki’s life, too. His idyllic childhood in the countryside comes to a definitive end when he’s drafted into the army and shipped off to the tiny island of Rabaul in Papua New Guinea. His life becomes a constant struggle for survival, not only against the constant Allied attacks but against the harsh discipline of the Japanese army officers. During his time in Rabaul, Mizuki comes to understand the misery and beauty of the island itself, a place that will permanently mark him and haunt him for the rest of his life.

E-book:

Redeployment – Phil Klay

redeployment

My hold came in! Hooray!

In Redeployment, a soldier who has had to shoot dogs because they were eating human corpses must learn what it is like to return to domestic life in suburbia, surrounded by people “who have no idea where Fallujah is, where three members of your platoon died.”  In “After Action Report”, a Lance Corporal seeks expiation for a killing he didn’t commit, in order that his best friend will be unburdened.  A Mortuary Affairs Marine tells about his experiences collecting remains — of U.S. and Iraqi soldiers both.  A chaplain sees his understanding of Christianity, and his ability to provide solace through religion, tested by the actions of a ferocious Colonel.  And in the darkly comic “Money as a Weapons System”, a young Foreign Service Officer is given the absurd task of helping Iraqis improve their lives by teaching them to play baseball.  These stories reveal the intricate combination of monotony, bureaucracy, comradeship and violence that make up a soldier’s daily life at war, and the isolation, remorse, and despair that can accompany a soldier’s homecoming.

Redeployment is poised to become a classic in the tradition of war writing.  Across nations and continents, Klay sets in devastating relief the two worlds a soldier inhabits: one of extremes and one of loss.  Written with a hard-eyed realism and stunning emotional depth, this work marks Phil Klay as one of the most talented new voices of his generation.

 

Kids’ loot:

Library Looting more #comics

 

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

 

A rainy Sunday afternoon. A quick break in the rain.

Dash dash dash out to the library to pick up some books for the kids and some graphic novel holds!

On the way home, the rain starts up again. We get home relatively dry! With plenty of good books to hunker down with!

Saga Vol 3 – Brian K Vaughan, Fiona Staples

saga3

From the Hugo Award-winning duo of Brian K. Vaughan (The Private Eye, Y: The Last Man) and Fiona Staples (North 40, Red Sonja), Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the universe. Searching for their literary hero, new parents Marko and Alana travel to a cosmic lighthouse on the planet Quietus, while the couple’s multiple pursuers finally close in on their targets.

I Remember Beirut – Zeina Abirached

rememberbeirut

Abirached was born in Lebanon in 1981. She grew up in Beirut as fighting between Christians and Muslims divided the city streets. Follow her past cars riddled with bullet holes, into taxi cabs that travel where buses refuse to go, and on outings to collect shrapnel from the sidewalk.

With striking black-and-white artwork, Abirached recalls the details of ordinary life inside a war zone.

 

Glacial Period – Nicolas De Crécy

glacialperiod

For the first time in the US, ComicsLit brings over the latest enfant terrible of European comics, a mad genius, and for the first time, the Louvre museum is involved in a co-edition of a series of graphic novels. There will be four and each will be a vision of this great museum by a different artist. De Crécy, at the sight of the incredible richness of the museum’s collection was overwhelmed and felt small and ignorant. The result is a story set thousands of years hence in a glacial period where all human history has been forgotten and a small group of archeologists fall upon the Louvre, buried in age-old snow. They cannot begin to explain all the artifacts they see. What could they have meant? Their interpretations are nonsense, absurd, farcical.

A Chinese life / written by Philippe Ôtié and Li Kunwu ; illustrated by Li Kunwu ; translated by Edward Gauvin

CV_UneVieChinoise.qxd

A Chinese Life is an astonishing graphic novel set against the backdrop of the creation of the People’s Republic of China in 1949. This distinctively drawn work chronicles the rise and reign of Chairman Mao Zedong, and his sweeping, often cataclysmic vision for the most populated country on the planet.
Though the storyline is epic, the storytelling is intimate, reflecting the real life of the book’s artist. Li Kunwu spent more than 30 years as a state artist for the Communist Party. He saw firsthand what was happening to his family, his neighbors, and his homeland during this extraordinary time. Working with Philippe Ôtié, the artist has created a memoir of self and state, a rich, very human account of a major historical moment with contemporary consequences. Mao said, “The masses are the real heroes,” but A Chinese Life shows those masses as real people.

E-books:

I found that my library’s 3M e-book catalogue had Funny Girl! And it was available! The physical book has 22 holds so of course I immediately downloaded the e-book!

Funny Girl – Nick Hornby

funnygirl

Set in 1960’s London, Funny Girl is a lively account of the adventures of the intrepid young Sophie Straw as she navigates her transformation from provincial ingénue to television starlet amid a constellation of delightful characters. Insightful and humorous, Nick Hornby’s latest does what he does best: endears us to a cast of characters who are funny if flawed, and forces us to examine ourselves in the process.

Kabu-Kabu – Nnedi Okorafor

kabukabu

Kabu Kabu – unregistered, illegal Nigerian taxis – generally get you where you need to go, but Nnedi Okorafor’s Kabu Kabu takes the reader to exciting, fantastic, magical, occasionally dangerous, and always imaginative locations. This debut short story collection by award-winning author Nnedi Okorafor includes notable previously-published short work, a new novella co-written with New York Times bestselling author Alan Dean Foster, and a brief forward by Whoopi Goldberg.

Kids’ Loot:

 

Library Loot

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

 

Ok now I am all set for Comics February!

 

 

a + e 4ever – I. Merey

a+e4ever

Asher Machnik is a teenage boy cursed with a beautiful androgynous face. Guys punch him, girls slag him and by high school he’s developed an intense fear of being touched. Art remains his only escape from an otherwise emotionally empty life. Eulalie Mason is the lonely, tough-talking dyke from school who befriends Ash. The only one to see and accept all of his sides as a loner, a fellow artist and a best friend, she’s starting to wonder if ash is ever going to see all of her…. a + e 4EVER is a graphic novel set in that ambiguous crossroads where love and friendship, boy and girl, straight and gay meet. It goes where few books have ventured, into genderqueer life, where affections aren’t black and white.


Ms Marvel Vol 1: No Normal – G. Willow Wilson

YAAAAYYYYY! Finally!!

msmarvel1

Kamala Khan is an ordinary girl from Jersey City — until she’s suddenly empowered with extraordinary gifts. But who truly is the new Ms. Marvel? Teenager? Muslim? Inhuman? Find out as she takes the Marvel Universe by storm! When Kamala discovers the dangers of her newfound powers, she unlocks a secret behind them, as well. Is Kamala ready to wield these immense new gifts? Or will the weight of the legacy before her be too much to bear? Kamala has no idea, either. But she’s comin’ for you, New York!

The Shadow Hero – story by Gene Luen Yang ; art by Sonny Liew ; lettering by Janice Chiang

Another one I am SO EXCITED to get my hands on!!

shadowhero

The Shadow Hero is based on golden-age comic series The Green Turtle, whose hero solved crimes and fought injustice just like any other comics hero. But this mysterious masked crusader was hiding more than your run-of-the-mill secret identity…The Green Turtle was the first Asian American superhero.

Now, exactly seventy years later, New York Times-bestselling author Gene Luen Yang has revived this nearly forgotten, pioneering character in a new graphic novel that creates an origin story for the golden-age Green Turtle.

With artwork by the unmatched Sonny Liew, this hilarious and insightful graphic novel about heroism and heritage is also a loving tribute to the long, rich tradition of American superhero comics.

Vietnamerica : a family’s journey / written and illustrated by GB Tran

I found this one when searching my library’s catalogue for ‘graphic novels’. Why yes, I do that, don’t you?
vietnamerica

GB Tran is a young Vietnamese American artist who grew up distant from (and largely indifferent to) his family’s history. Born and raised in South Carolina as a son of immigrants, he knew that his parents had fled Vietnam during the fall of Saigon. But even as they struggled to adapt to life in America, they preferred to forget the past—and to focus on their children’s future. It was only in his late twenties that GB began to learn their extraordinary story. When his last surviving grandparents die within months of each other, GB visits Vietnam for the first time and begins to learn the tragic history of his family, and of the homeland they left behind.

In this family saga played out in the shadow of history, GB uncovers the root of his father’s remoteness and why his mother had remained in an often fractious marriage; why his grandfather had abandoned his own family to fight for the Viet Cong; why his grandmother had had an affair with a French soldier. GB learns that his parents had taken harrowing flight from Saigon during the final hours of the war not because they thought America was better but because they were afraid of what would happen if they stayed. They entered America—a foreign land they couldn’t even imagine—where family connections dissolved and shared history was lost within a span of a single generation.

In telling his family’s story, GB finds his own place in this saga of hardship and heroism. Vietnamerica is a visually stunning portrait of survival, escape, and reinvention—and of the gift of the American immigrants’ dream, passed on to their children. Vietnamerica is an unforgettable story of family revelation and reconnection—and a new graphic-memoir classic.

Black Widow Vol 1: The Finely Woven Thread – Nathan Edmondson, Phil Noto (Illustrator)

blackwidow1

You’ve seen Black Widow as an Avenger and even an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. But on her own time she searches for atonement for her past as a KGB assassin – in ways of which those teams just wouldn’t approve. The Black Widow goes undercover in Russia, but from its cold streets, the Hand of God reaches out to crush her…and it is as merciless as its name implies. Outmatched by the brute force of a powerful new villain, Natasha faces her deadliest test, and discovers a deadly plot unfolding that spans the entire globe. From the Marvel Universe’s darkest corners, Nathan Edmonson (Who is Jake Ellis?) and Phil Noto (Thunderbolts, X-23) bring you a new series as gorgeous and mysterious as Natasha Romanov herself!

The kids’ loot:
I grabbed these in five minutes from the area where the librarians leave books yet to be shelved. I figure I’m kinda helping by borrowing them so that they don’t need to be shelved!

What did you get from your library this week?

Library Loot (Dec 10 2014)

 

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

Lots of books to return. A storm brewing. Hurry hurry home with library loot! Just one for me. I haven’t downloaded any new e-books either. Hmmm what is going on??!?!

Kill my mother: a graphic novel – Jules Feiffer
Not sure why I requested this but the hold came in and I picked it up. Ok rather long blurb here from Goodreads

killmymother

Adding to a legendary career that includes a Pulitzer Prize, an Academy Award, Obie Awards, and Lifetime Achievement Awards from the National Cartoonist Society and the Writers Guild of America, Jules Feiffer now presents his first noir graphic novel. Kill My Mother is a loving homage to the pulp-inspired films and comic strips of his youth. Channeling Eisner’s The Spirit, along with the likes of Hammett, Chandler, Cain, John Huston, and Billy Wilder, and spiced with the deft humor for which Feiffer is renowned, Kill My Mother centers on five formidable women from two unrelated families, linked fatefully and fatally by a has-been, hard-drinking private detective.

As our story begins, we meet Annie Hannigan, an out-of-control teenager, jitterbugging in the 1930s. Annie dreams of offing her mother, Elsie, whom she blames for abandoning her for a job soon after her husband, a cop, is shot and killed. Now, employed by her husband s best friend an over-the-hill and perpetually soused private eye Elsie finds herself covering up his missteps as she is drawn into a case of a mysterious client, who leads her into a decade-long drama of deception and dual identities sprawling from the Depression era to World War II Hollywood and the jungles of the South Pacific.

Along with three femme fatales, an obsessed daughter, and a loner heroine, Kill My Mother features a fighter turned tap dancer, a small-time thug who dreams of being a hit man, a name-dropping cab driver, a communist liquor store owner, and a hunky movie star with a mind-boggling secret. Culminating in a U.S.O. tour on a war-torn Pacific island, this disparate band of old enemies congregate to settle scores.

In a drawing style derived from Steve Canyon and The Spirit, Feiffer combines his long-honed skills as cartoonist, playwright, and screenwriter to draw us into this seductively menacing world where streets are black with soot and rain, and base motives and betrayal are served on the rocks in bars unsafe to enter. Bluesy, fast-moving, and funny, Kill My Mother is a trip to Hammett-Chandler-Cain Land: a noir-graphic novel like the movies they don t make anymore.”

The kids’ loot.
We are becoming fans of Mo Willems in our house. Wee Reader has caught on to the sense of humor and quite enjoys it. And of course the usual construction-related books, some of which we had borrowed before and that I’ve not featured here.

What did you get from your library this week?

Library Loot (August 14 2014)

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

 

Wow the library sure was packed with little kids today. And we bumped into Wee Reader’s good friend. Of course 3-year-old boys being 3-year-old boys, they stared at each other and did their own thing.

Siege and Storm – Leigh Bardugo

Book 2 of the Grisha series. I must say that I really quite like the covers of this series.

siegeandstorm

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She can’t outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling’s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her–or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.

An e-book. Just one!

The Vacationers – Emma Straub

Grasping on to those last bits of summer here…

vacationers

 

For the Posts, a two-week trip to the Balearic island of Mallorca with their extended family and friends is a celebration: Franny and Jim are observing their thirty-fifth wedding anniversary, and their daughter, Sylvia, has graduated from high school. The sunlit island, its mountains and beaches, its tapas and tennis courts, also promise an escape from the tensions simmering at home in Manhattan. But all does not go according to plan: over the course of the vacation, secrets come to light, old and new humiliations are experienced, childhood rivalries resurface, and ancient wounds are exacerbated.

This is a story of the sides of ourselves that we choose to show and those we try to conceal, of the ways we tear each other down and build each other up again, and the bonds that ultimately hold us together. With wry humor and tremendous heart, Emma Straub delivers a richly satisfying story of a family in the midst of a maelstrom of change, emerging irrevocably altered yet whole.

 

The kids’ loot:

 

 

What did you get from your library this week?

Library Loot (March 28 2014)

 

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

My mum suggested going to the library every other week instead of every week, as she wondered if the kids would run out of books to read. But the library has a pretty big collection of picture books, and there are plenty more not on the shelves (as in, borrowed out by others) that can be found via the online catalogue and requested. I’m sure we will have very many many more picture books to read for as long as they’re interested in picture books! Plus we can always reread their favourites!


Crawling at Night – Nani Power

A bit of a weird sounding book but I’m curious enough to have put a hold on it sometime ago. And there it was waiting for me.

crawlingatnight

Crawling at Night is a searing, unforgettable portrait of New York City and of the appetites and self-sabotaging patterns of its displaced inhabitants. Ito is a literate yet tongue-tied sushi chef who recites haiku in his head as he labors over shopping lists, which at once define and confine him. Alone, he dreams of Mariane, a lost alcoholic waitress who works with him at the Chelsea sushi bar. Ito can’t help but live part of every waking day reliving the tragedy he left behind in Japan, and across town Mariane yearns for the baby girl she abandoned almost fifteen years before. In the spinning haze of two nights in Manhattan, Ito and Mariane find themselves careening on a downward spiral through the dark streets of the city. As they navigate a sea of alcohol, sex, and exotic food, we are taken inside the minds of other scarred people they encounter, whose paths, like the streets of the city itself, crisscross and overlap, skimming one another for some sort of connection. Crawling at Night is a dazzling evocation of the way people draw each other in to absorb the shock of loneliness, and how they then either drift out of orbit or are pushed away. With heartbreaking intimacy, Power shows that the dark side of the city and its struggling inhabitants is but an extension of the purest longings and intentions of those very same, very human people.

Winter Rose – Patricia A McKillip

For Once Upon a Time VIII

winterrose

Sorrow and trouble and bitterness will bound you and yours and the children of yours…

Some said the dying words of Nial Lynn, murdered by his own son, were a wicked curse. To others, it was a winter’s tale spun by firelight on cold, dark nights. But when Corbet Lynn came to rebuild his family estate, memories of his grandfather’s curse were rekindled by young and old – and rumours filled the heavy air of summer.

In the woods that border Lynn Hall, free-spirited Rois Melior roams wild and barefooted in search of healing herbs. She is as hopelessly unbridled – and unsuited for marriage – as her betrothed sister Laurel is domestic. In Corbet’s pale green eyes, Rois senses a desperate longing. In her restless dreams, mixed with the heady warmth of harvest wine, she hears him beckon. And as autumn gold fades, Rois is consumed with Corbet Lynn, obsessed with his secret past – until, across the frozed countryside and in flight from her own imagination, truth and dreams become inseparable…

Everyday Harumi – Harumi Kurihara

Writing about Harumi’s Japanese Cooking last weekend made me realize I’ve not read her other cookbooks yet. So here is one of them.

everydayharumi

Harumi Kurihara, Japan’s most famous cookbook writer, selects her favorite ingredients and presents 70 new home-style recipes for you to make for family and friends.
In Everyday Harumi, Harumi Kurihara, Japan’s most popular cookbook writer, selects her favorite foods and presents more than 60 new home-style recipes for you to make for family and friends. Harumi wants everyone to be able to make her recipes and she demonstrates how easy it is to cook Japanese food for every day occasions without needing to shop at specialist food stores. Arranged by her favorite ingredients, Harumi presents recipes for soups, starters, snacks, party dishes, main courses and family feasts that are quick and simple to prepare, all presented in her effortless, down-to-earth and unpretentious approach to sylish living and eating. Every recipe is photographed and includes beautiful step by step advice that show key Japanese cooking techniques, such as chopping skills or how to serve rice. Texture and flavor are important to Japanese food and Harumi takes you through the basic sauces you can make at home and the staples you should have in your store cupboard. Photographed by award-winning photographer Jason Lowe, this warm and approachable cookbook invites you to cook and share Japanese food in a simple and elegant style.

The kids’ loot:
Lots of vehicle-related (and storm and sea-related!) books for the one who is turning three on Monday, and some baby board books for the little one who is fascinated with baby faces

Library Loot (February 28 2014)

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library

Wee Reader and I braved the rain to hit the library, while my mum stayed home with the baby. It was a rather quiet day at the kids’ section, as expected, so he got to play with the puzzles to his heart’s delight (ie not very long) and grab a Thomas Train book for himself. It was nice to spend time with just Wee Reader, and he enjoyed his short walk in the rain from the parking lot (under an umbrella that is), as it is rare that we get rain here.

The loot is mostly for the kids as I’ve still got quite a bit of graphic novels to catch up on. And it’s the last day of Graphic Novels Month too!

piratesdaughter
The pirate’s daughter – Margaret Cezair-Thompson

A multi-generational story based around the extraordinary true story of Errol Flynn’s arrival in 1940s Jamaica. The Pirate’s Daughter follows Ida, a young girl who falls for Flynn’s legendary charms. Through the eyes of Ida and her daughter, May, it also tells the story of their home, Jamaica before and after independence.

E-books:

Beloved – Toni Morrison

I’ve never read anything by Morrison before. Amending that soon!

beloved

Staring unflinchingly into the abyss of slavery, this spellbinding novel transforms history into a story as powerful as Exodus and as intimate as a lullaby.

Sethe was born a slave and escaped to Ohio, but eighteen years later she is still not free. She has too many memories of Sweet Home, the beautiful farm where so many hideous things happened. Her new home is haunted by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved.

The House at World’s End – Monica Dickens

houseworldsend

The Fielding children have to go and stay with their Uncle Rudolph and Aunt Valentina as their father is sailing round the world and their mother has been hurt in an accident. The children and their relatives clash endlessly, and at last Uncle Rudolph allows them to live in a tumbledown old inn he owns: World’s End.

 

Wee Readers’ loot:
Two for the baby and the rest for the almost 3yo
checkersdot
Checkers and Dot – J. Torres ; illustrated by J. Lum

kisstickle

Kiss Tickle Cuddle Hug – Susan Musgrave
mrgumpy
Mr Gumpy’s outing – John Burningham
doglovescounting
Dog loves counting – Louise Yates
sleepybook
Sleepy book – Charlotte Zolotow ; pictures by Stefano Vitale
greeneggs
Green eggs and ham – Dr Seuss
bluetraingreentrain
Blue Train, Green Train – Tommy Stubbs
shortcut
Shortcut – Donald Crews
verabike
Vera rides a bike – Vera Rosenberry
fionalovesnight
Fiona loves the night – Patricia MacLachlan and Emily MacLachlan Charest ; illustrated by Amanda Shepherd
russelllosttreasure
Russell and the lost treasure – Rob Scotton
mypreschool
My preschool – Anne Rockwell

 

What did you get from your library this week?

Library Loot (21 February 2014)

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library

Plenty of graphic novels for me, and picture books for the kids!

Same difference – Derek Kirk Kim
samedifference

When Derek Kirk Kim (The Eternal Smile) published his debut graphic novel back in 2003, it made an immediate stir. The story about a group of young people navigating adulthood and personal relationships is told with such sympathy and perception that the book was immediately hailed as an important new work.

Seven years later, it’s clear that Same Difference has won a place among the great literature of the last decade. It stands not only with Fun Home, Persepolis, and American Born Chinese as a lasting graphic novel, but with much of the best fiction of this young century. Derek’s distinctive voice as an author, coupled with his clear, crisp, expressive art has made this story a classic. And this classic is now back in print, in a deluxe edition from First Second

Nylon Road: a graphic memoir of coming of age in Iran – Parsua Bashi
nylonroad

In the tradition of graphic memoirs such as Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis, comes the story of a young Iranian woman’s struggles with growing up under Shiite Law, her journey into adulthood, and the daughter whom she had to leave behind when she left Iran. NYLON ROAD is a window into the soul of a culture that we are still struggling to understand. Beautifully told, poignant, this is a powerful work about the necessity of freedom.

A game for swallows: to die, to leave, to return – Zeina Abirached
gameswallows

When Zeina was born, the civil war in Lebanon had been going on for six years, so it’s just a normal part of life for her and her parents and her little brother. The city of Beirut is cut in two, separated by bricks and sandbags and threatened by snipers and shelling. East Beirut is for Christians, and West Beirut is for Muslims. When Zeina’s parents don’t return one afternoon from a visit to the other half of the city, and the bombing grows ever closer, the neighbors in her apartment house create a world indoors for Zeina and her brother where it’s comfy and safe, where they can share cooking lessons and games and gossip. Together they try to make it through a dramatic day in the one place they hoped they would always be safehome. Zeina Abirached, born into a Lebanese Christian family in 1981, has collected her childhood recollections of Beirut in a warm story about the strength of family and community.

The dead boy detectives – Ed Brubaker
deadboydetectives

Collected for the first time, this tale stars Edwin and Charles from THE SANDMAN: SEASON OF MISTS. Their first case involves a string of grisly murders — and the immortal Hob Gadling.

Epileptic – David B
epileptic

David B. was born Pierre-François Beauchard in a small town near Orléans, France. He spent an idyllic early childhood playing with the neighborhood kids and, along with his older brother, Jean-Christophe, ganging up on his little sister, Florence. But their lives changed abruptly when Jean-Christophe was struck with epilepsy at age eleven. In search of a cure, their parents dragged the family to acupuncturists and magnetic therapists, to mediums and macrobiotic communes. But every new cure ended in disappointment as Jean-Christophe, after brief periods of remission, would only get worse.

Angry at his brother for abandoning him and at all the quacks who offered them false hope, Pierre-François learned to cope by drawing fantastically elaborate battle scenes, creating images that provide a fascinating window into his interior life. An honest and horrifying portrait of the disease and of the pain and fear it sowed in the family, Epileptic is also a moving depiction of one family’s intricate history. Through flashbacks, we are introduced to the stories of Pierre-François’s grandparents and we relive his grandfathers’ experiences in both World Wars. We follow Pierre-François through his childhood, adolescence, and adulthood, all the while charting his complicated relationship with his brother and Jean-Christophe”s losing battle with epilepsy. Illustrated with beautiful and striking black-and-white images, Epileptic is as astonishing, intimate, and heartbreaking as the best literary memoir.

Great books for boys: more than 600 books for boys 2 to 14 – Kathleen Odean

Always good to have more books to add to my list!
greatbooksboys

BOOKS THAT WILL MAKE BOYS WANT TO READ!

Parents, grandparents, teachers, and librarians–we need a tool that guides us to the books that will inspire boys to read and keep them coming back for more. Now Kathleen Odean, a former member of the Caldecott and Newbery Award committees and author of the groundbreaking bestseller Great Books for Girls has compiled and annotated a unique collection of more than six hundred books–picture books, novels, mysteries, biographies, sports books, and more–that will fascinate and educate boys. Here are classic characters such as Frog and Toad, Bilbo Baggins, and Encyclopedia Brown; new favorites such as Bingo Brown, Martin the Warrior, and Harry the Dirty Dog; and real-life inspirations such as the Wright brothers, Jackie Robinson, and Jacques Cousteau.

The boys who discover reading from the books in this invaluable volume will witness a wide range of role models–and embark upon an adventure that will fuel their dreams for the rest of their lives.

A couple of e-books:

The Foreigner – Francie Lin

foreigner

Winner of the Edgar® Award for Best First Novel by an American Author

Set against the Taiwanese criminal underworld, The Foreigner is Francie Lin’s audacious debut novel. A noirish tale about family, fraternity, conscience, and the curious gulf between a man’s culture and his deepest self

Emerson Chang is a mild mannered bachelor on the cusp of forty, a financial analyst in a neatly pressed suit, a child of Taiwanese immigrants who doesn’t speak a word of Chinese, and, well, a virgin. His only real family is his mother, whose subtle manipulations have kept him close–all in the name of preserving an obscure idea of family and culture.

But when his mother suddenly dies, Emerson sets out for Taipei to scatter her ashes, and to convey a surprising inheritance to his younger brother, Little P. Now enmeshed in the Taiwanese criminal underworld, Little P seems to be running some very shady business out of his uncle’s karaoke bar, and he conceals a secret–a crime that has not only severed him from his family, but may have annihilated his conscience. Hoping to appease both the living and the dead, Emerson isn’t about to give up the inheritance until he uncovers Little P’s past, and saves what is left of his family.

The Foreigner is a darkly comic tale of crime and contrition, and a riveting story about what it means to be a foreigner–even in one’s own family.

Zahrah the wind seeker – Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu

zahrah

In the northern Ooni Kingdom, fear of the unknown runs deep, and children born dada are rumored to have special powers. Thirteen-year-old Zahrah Tsami feels like a normal girls life.

– she grows her own flora computer; has mirrors sewn onto her cloths; and stays clear of the Forbidden Greeny Jungle.

But unlike other kids in the village of Kirki , Zahrah was born with the telling dadalocks.

The Wee Readers’ loot:
oceanbabies
Ocean babies – Deborah Lee Rose; illustrated by Hiroe Nakata
bigboxben
Big box for Ben – Deborah Bruss; Tomek Bogacki
dannysdrawingbook
Danny’s drawing book – Sue Heap
redgreenblue
Red green blue: a first book of colors – Alison Jay
boats
Boats: speeding! Sailing! Cruising! – Patricia Hubbell; Megan Halsey and Sean Addy
snails
Let’s look at Snails – Laura Hamilton Waxman
stripes
Stripes of all types – Susan Stockdale
brownrabbitcity
Brown rabbit in the city – Natalie Russell
seeyoudreams
I’ll see you in my dreams – Mavis Jukes; Stacey Schuett
pssst
Pssst! – Adam Rex

What did you get from your library this week?

Library Loot (11 February 2014)

badge-4Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. 

 So I picked up one non-fiction travel book, and several graphic novel holds finally came in!

The longest way home : one man’s quest for the courage to settle down – Andrew McCarthy
Yup, that Andrew McCarthy. The one in Pretty in Pink and St Elmo’s Fire. He’s a travel writer! An award-winning travel writer! I was just so very very curious…

longestwayhome

Award-winning travel writer and actor Andrew McCarthy delivers a revealing and insightful memoir about how travel helped him become the man he wanted to be, helping him overcome life-long fears and confront his resistance to commitment.From time immemorial, travel has been a pursuit of passion—from adventurers of old seeking gold or new lands, to today’s spiritual and pleasure seekers who follow in the footsteps of Elizabeth Gilbert. Some see travel as a form of light-hearted escapism while others believe it has the power to open your mind, forcing you to confront your demons, and discover your true self. Andrew McCarthy belongs to this second category of traveler. The Longest Way Home follows his excursions to Patagonia, the Amazon, Costa Rica, Baltimore, Vienna, Kilimanjaro, Dublin, and beyond. He uses his wanderlust to examine his motives and desires, and explore his ambivalence about commitment. He ponders his personal life, his acting career, and his impulse to leave home, all building toward one of the most significant moments of his life: his wedding day. Genuine and spirited, McCarthy’s message about the transformative power of travel is universal, and his exploration of the nature and passion of relationships, both fleeting and enduring, will strike a chord with every man and woman who has ever wondered at the vicissitudes of the human heart.

Sloth – Gilbert Hernandez
I’ve been curious about the Love and Rockets series that Hernandez and his brother Jaime write, but can’t quite figure which book to start with (as usual my library has an assortment of books from a graphic novel series, instead of having all of them). So thought I’d try this one first.

sloth

Troubled teenager Miguel Torres has had it with life. The only alternative he sees is to willfully slip into a coma. But one year later, Miguel becomes a walking urban legend after he wakes up virtually unchanged — except for his sloth-like pace. Soon, a haunted lemon orchard, the mysterious goat man, and murder will collide as Miguel, his girlfriend Lita and their best friend Romeo take on the teenage wasteland that is suburbia in the 21st century.
Will Miguel find love? Or has he risen from his slumber just to end up another rock and roll suicide? In this hypnotic, coming-of-age tale, Gilbert Hernandez deftly defines what it means to truly be alive in a land where life is not precious

The Eternal Smile – Gene Luen Yang and Derek Kirk Kim

eternalsmile

Meet Duncan.
Charming and brave, he’s the Princess’s favorite–and he’s on his way to winning the throne. But lately, the walls of reality in Duncan’s kingdom are wearing a little thin…

Meet Gran’pa Greenbax.
Nothing seems to satisfy this greedy old frog’s longing for a pool full of gold–until, one day, a mysterious smile appears in the sky. Has his chance at happiness come at last?

Meet Janet.
Her nine-to-five life takes a turn for the romantic when she learns in an email from a mysterious Nigerian prince that she has been chosen to liberate his family’s vast fortune. All he needs is her banking information.

In three very different stories, master storytellers Gene Yang and Derek Kirk pit fantasy against reality, for good or for ill. Subtle, surprising, and entirely entertaining, The Eternal Smile delves into our dreams, and the unexpected places they lead.

Hilda and the Midnight Giant – Luke Pearson

hildamidnightgiant

In Hilda and the Midnight Giant, our protagonist finds her world turned upside down as she faces the prospect of leaving her snow-capped birthplace for the hum of the megalopolis, where her mother (an architect) has been offered a prestigious job. During Hilda’s daily one-and-a-half hour trek to school she looks for ways to stall her mother’s decision. She conspires with the beings of the mystical Blue Forest to delay the inevitable. Will they help or hinder her? More importantly, who is this mysterious Midnight Giant?

This is the first part of the Hildafolk series, a series that follows Hilda on her many adventures and travels through the magical fjords and enchanted mountains of her birthplace as she unravels the mysteries of the supernatural world that surrounds her.

Emiko Superstar – Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Steve Rolston

emikosuperstar

In graphic novel format, Emiko, a self-described geek, faces a summer of isolation until she stumbles upon a performance-art group and feeling drawn to them, tries out for a part that leads to minor stardom and a difficult delemma.

Sunny 1 – Taiyo Matsumoto

sunny

The latest manga masterpiece from the Eisner Award-winning creator of Tekkonkinkreet.What is Sunny? Sunny is a car. Sunny is a car you take on a drive with your mind. It takes you to the place of your dreams.

Sunny is the story of beating the odds, in the ways that count. It’s the brand-new masterwork from Eisner Award-winner Taiyo Matsumoto, one of Japan’s most innovative and acclaimed manga artists.

Wee Readers’ loot:
again
Again! – Emily Gravett
dragondance
D is for dragon dance – Ying Chang Compestine
mousetronaut
Mousetronaut: based on a (partially)true story – Mark Kelly; C. F. Payne
spyeye
I spy with my little eye – Edward Gibbs
benstrumpet
Ben’s trumpet – Rachel Isadora
benstrumpet
Hop on pop – Dr Seuss
wildthings
Where the wild things are – Maurice Sendark
machineswork
Machines at work – Byron Barton